Cold Case Reopened into Trucker's Death
Posted August 23, 2007
Newton Grove — It was a shot heard across the country in 1983.
George Capps, 34, was shot in the throat with a high-powered rifle as he drove his tractor-trailer into Newton Grove. It was a difficult case from the beginning, according to the sheriff back then.
Today, the case remains unsolved.
“I’ve prayed for justice for 24 years, and I still do. That's the only thing that's kept me going,” said Esmond Capps Elliott, Capps’ widow. “When I look at my life, it’s like a puzzle laying on a table with a big gaping hole in the middle.”
Sgt. Tracey Brogden with the Newton Grove Police Department reopened the cold case this week. There are no new leads, but authorities and the family said they believe someone in the area knows what happened.
“I will follow it and chase it as long as I got something to follow,” Brogden said.
The murder made national headlines, because it happened during a violent Independent Truckers Association strike. Other working drivers where threatened and even shot at on the highway.
“The theory is, during that time it was related,” Brogden said.
Capps' family said they are grateful investigators are back on the case.
“How could you murder someone in cold blood that's never done anything to you and go on living? How does someone live with something like that?” Capps Elliott said. “It does give me some hope. I know he's not being forgotten.”
The Highway Patrol began escorting truckers during the strike shortly after Capps was murdered.
If you have any information about this case, call the Newton Grove Police Department. Over the years, the reward has grown to about $60,000 for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.